Midterm report


Yesterday was the midpoint for the National Novel Writing Month (aka NaNoWriMo).  I’m still not sure what inspired me to jump into this bit of nonsense, though I think I’ll lay the blame on TMC, Ms Return to Rural, who I believe said she was going to jump in.  Then I openly mulled it, and Amurin and Jules double-dog-dared me, and well . . . you know what happens when I’m double-dog-dared.

Like many who partake in this madness, I didn’t really have a story, to be speak of, that desperately needed to be told.  Eventually though, a story started to emerge.  And then some characters started developing, and fortunately they brought along with them a plot.  And then they started talking.  Oh lord, did they start talking.  I mean, I’ve been trying to hurry them along, since I would like to get to the part of the story I’m most excited about.  But no . . . And then they brought friends along with them.  I mean, come on guys! I’m trying to tell a story here, and y’all just keep yammering on.

It’s been a challenging month, as I’ve already explained.  I would think these sort of insane challenges such as NaNo are best accomplished when there is a modicum of normality in your life.  But, between the agony (boo Prop 8!) and ecstasy (yay Obama!) of the election and my own professional limbo, it’s been hard finding any kind of regular pattern to my writing times.  Mornings are probably best, but I’ve opted to avoid the writing by laying in bed dreading to go to work.  Which of course is terribly effective.

But, I am happy to report that as of last night I had 22,000 words.  Sure, I’m not quite at the 25,000 mark where I should be, but I’m still within a shot of finishing my 50,000 words by the end of November.

It’s been an interesting experience.  I’ve learned I cannot write fiction within hearing shot of any human voices.  I thought it would be fun to go the write-ins or hang out in cafes and look all writerly and shit.  Turns out I pretty much need to total silence in order to pry anything creative out of my brain and put it on the page.  I’ve learned that I’m not terribly literary – at least at this point in the game.  My prose is pretty damn pedestrian.  I would sell my soul, no my house (oh wait I don’t own that) uh . . . how about one of the rabbits.  No, you gotta take ’em both since they are finally bonded. What was I talking about?  Oh, right.  Let’s just say I would gladly take any of Amurin’s discarded prose and call it mine.

Oh my, look at the time.  I need to get into the office.  I still don’t have a start date for the new job.  Apparently my boss wants to keep me until the end of the year, which is not OK with new boss.  And frankly, I need to tell both of those bosses I need some damn time off.  So, I think I have to get old daddy and new mommy on one conference call to discuss my custody.  Oy.

12 responses »

  1. Well, well, well… I’ll take your blame and raise you 25,000 words!!

    Ok, so I don’t yet have 25,000 words but I do believe that the deadline is 11/30 and man oh man do I push towards a deadline. We’ll just see, won’t we? : )

  2. I’m just barely over half way done…25,831. I also have a trip to the bay area coming up and my daughter invited her friends to my house for Thanksgiving with me cooking. I wasn’t going to. We were going to go out because of Nanowrimo and because I’m vegetarian and I was not going to fix a whole dinner for just my daughter. Now I have to because she has invited her friends that have no place to go. I can’t say no.

    With any luck, I’ll get to at least 40,000 before my trip but I’m not holding my breath!

  3. Once I had the idea to write a novel. I bought a note book I could carry around, I got a small sketch book thinking to jot down visual ideas. Then I realized I lack a certain abaility to paint a verbal picture that anyone in their right mind might find appealing. So, I gave the sketch pad to my son, I have no idea where the note book is, and somewhere in me is a novel waiting to be unleashed upon the world.

    You have clearly begun something I could never. Carry on, good friend, carry on.

  4. As a small post-script: I’m guessing your word processor has the ability to tell you how many words are in a document; otherwise I think you all might be spending way too much time counting.

  5. WOW! This is wonderful! Congratulations……I am soooo proud. I know how hard this stuff is and you have taken the tougher road (as compared to the Nablopomo challenge of daily blogging) and still continue up that hill of writing a NOVEL! The most difficult of all writing, I believe. Wait-a-go!

  6. “I thought it would be fun to go the write-ins or hang out in cafes and look all writerly and shit.”

    sounds like our boy from Catch Her in the Rye to me

  7. Sounds like you’re making great progress. NaBloPoMo is hard enough for me. I applaud your efforts in jumping into the novel portion. Isn’t it exciting to see how far you’ve come? I use ear plugs when noise starts to get at me, but this may not work for you. Might try though.

    I hate it when the old boss wants to keep you for months and it doesn’t work for the new boss. Wonder if they’ll hash it out and which one will win.

    Anyway, keep up the good work and good luck.

  8. You’re too kind, L.B., but honestly… those rejected nanowribits are bogus, I wrote them to entertain on the blog. The novel writing, isn’t going quite the same. I’ve also been disappointed with my efforts, too. Sometimes it just seems boring!

    But… first draft, right? First thoughts. This is just the rough material, the block of marble like one of the pep-talks said. I kinda think of it like music you hear on the radio. Someone came up with the premise, and then the song gets ‘washed’ -sort of tuned up, added too, given all the beat and vim and vigor in later incarnations.

    lol @ “Mornings are probably best, but I’ve opted to avoid the writing by laying in bed dreading to go to work. Which of course is terribly effective.”

    I’m impressed with you, Corina, and Jaynova- for getting it done! After saying I wasn’t worried about word count, last week I fell way behind. I won’t say hopelessly behind, but if i don’t completely haul ass this week, 50,000 isn’t going to be attainable.

    I love what you say about your characters ‘yammering on’. They are stubborn, huh? Once they’re given a life of their own, it’s like they’re as unmanageable as independent children. 🙂

    (speaking of yammering on, srry for writing a whole blog post in your comment section. Procrastination, y’know)

  9. ugh… i am hopelessly behind. Still at only 6,200 words. If I could just get a couple of hours I think I could spill out a couple of thousand words because like you said… the characters are starting to talk for themselves.

    Maybe one of my characters could build a time machine, then i could follow the plans and build one for myself. : )

  10. hmmm, here I am, the fallen away, brought back to my tribe by a random search for a Yashica-mat 124 Tlr Camera, which I found on UU Diest in Texas blog, which led me here, both of which mention Amuirin, who happens to be a favorite of mine, too.

    So what is this NaBloPoMo and Nanowrimo? Sounds like maybe just what this lazy, achy, creaky, cranky procrastinator needs to re-engage the writing gears. I’ll check it out.

    In the meantime I hope you keep stumbling along the path and reporting from the road. I’ll get my blog cleaned up and re-presentable. Some of the columns have fallen down and the place is dusty as hell.

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